Horizon Protocol Community Call #1 Recap

Horizon Protocol Community Call #1 Recap

We are excited to share this recap of our inaugural Horizon Protocol Community Call, which took place on July 28th. This event offered a valuable opportunity for us to reflect on the achievements of the first half of the year, outline our plans for the second half, and answer live community questions. If you missed the call or wish to revisit it, you can access the full audio recording by clicking here. Alternatively, read on for an in-depth summary of the conversations that took place during the session.


  • Introductions
  • Reflecting on H1 2023
  • Looking Ahead to H2 2023
  • Community Questions
  • Closing Notes


The call was hosted by our Education Director, Stanton. He was joined by Lynn, the Communications & Marketing Lead, and JR, the Community & Ecosystem Coordinator.

Reflecting on H1 2023

Vision, Purpose, and Mission: We reiterated Horizon Protocol’s core vision, aiming to empower the community with a comprehensive suite of tools for secure and borderless trading of synthetic assets. Our focus centers on lowering entry barriers for retail users and broadening the variety of synthetic assets accessible within the crypto DeFi realm. Our ongoing mission remains resolute: to create a global financial market for synthetic assets mirroring real-world economic trends.

Navigating Challenges: The ongoing year has been marked by volatile fluctuations and regulatory uncertainties in the world of crypto. Despite these challenges, our commitment to deliver a sustainable DeFi project stays strong. We will continue to focus on product development, user experience enhancement, and promoting awareness of Horizon Protocol.

Metrics: We presented key metrics illustrating our progress. On DeFiLlama, Horizon Protocol ranked #26 based on TVL locked in the Derivatives category across all chains and #6 on the BNB Chain, reaching a peak TVL of $7.2M.

From a protocol perspective, the number of stakers witnessed a 5% increase. Holders grew by 8%, with a peak of 10K holders in April. Unique trading addresses surged by 28%, and total trading volume reached $1.36M. These metrics illustrate steady growth and increased traction, but there’s room to further increase participation.

Product Milestones: The first half of 2023 witnessed the launch of the new Horizon Protocol landing page, receiving overwhelmingly positive feedback. Notable developments included updating our smart contracts to support upcoming features like the perpetual futures exchange, collateralized loans, token wrapping into zAssets, and other items listed in our 2023 roadmap.

A comprehensive security review of over 100 smart contracts is being conducted in collaboration with PeckShield, a leading auditor in the industry, highlighting our commitment to ensure the security of our users.

The upcoming Horizon Protocol UI V2, currently in beta, promises an enhanced user experience. It integrates a cross-chain swap feature and boosts the interaction between traders and stakers. New user onboarding has been streamlined, laying a strong foundation for future releases.

Decentralization: We’ve leveraged additional features from Chainlink, successfully integrating Chainlink Automation to automate our weekly minting process. This move marks a major step towards mitigating centralized points of failure within the protocol.

A Path of Progress: This update is just the beginning. We are eager to see how Horizon Protocol will continue to evolve and innovate. We truly believe that the commitment to user experience and collaboration will help Horizon Protocol become a leading force in the industry for synthetic assets.

Governance: In recent months, we’ve introduced five new Horizon Improvement Proposals (HIPs), including:

  • HIP 6: Lowering the target C-Ratio to 600%, which had a successful implementation.
  • HIPs 7–10: Concentrating on enhancing liquidity and optimizing access through the centralization of liquidity pools on Wombat Exchange. Although a detailed explanation is beyond the scope of this community call, you can explore the meaning of these HIPs by referring to our previous AMA with Wombat. Feedback on HIPs 7–10 has been positive, and discussions are ongoing about which steps to take next.

Community Engagement

  • Community Growth: Understanding the crucial role of our community, we launched the Horizon Rangers program — an ambassador initiative that focuses on educating and assisting newcomers entering the world of DeFi. The response was overwhelming, with more than 170 applications showing a strong eagerness to contribute to the growth of our protocol.
  • Regional Communities: We have created three new regional communities — Turkish, Vietnamese, and Spanish — recognizing the importance of breaking language barriers to make DeFi accessible to everyone. Community volunteers have been instrumental in translating Horizon Academy into five additional languages, ensuring that knowledge sharing reaches a wider audience.
  • Transparency and Engagement: We showed our commitment to transparency by sharing our plans for 2023 and holding AMA sessions. The community’s feedback greatly helped us with creating the new design, and we want to thank everyone who helped test the new UI V2. A big shoutout to Default User for his helpful feedback!

Protocol & Ecosystem

We want to begin by discussing our approach to the Protocol & Ecosystem, shedding light on our motivations. We’ve remained committed to long-term success amid market challenges, positioning our protocol strategically.

We’ve made deliberate choices with a future-positive impact, testing and refining marketing strategies for optimal outcomes. Thoughtful spending is key, given the cost-effectiveness of certain Web3 marketing services.

In the rapid Web3 world, where quick gains dominate, we prioritize sustainable growth, trust-building, and community engagement, even during volatile market cycles. These strategies aim for enduring success.

With this mindset, we’ve engaged on Twitter spaces, collaborating with other projects and participating in 8 spaces this year, including:

  • Buidlbee Twitter Space
  • BNB LIVE by ThiagoBNB
  • WOLF Finance — Crypto Trading & Macro Trends
  • Pear Dao Twitter space
  • BTSLabs RWA Twitter space
  • AndinoDAO
  • Wombat Exchange
  • Stader Labs

Education is crucial for our protocol’s growth and community development. Through these efforts, we provide accessible information to a wider audience about synthetic assets and Horizon Protocol. And so far, these actions have yielded us results, with daily impressions rising from 1585 in 2022 to 2403 YTD — a 52% increase. Our educational initiatives include several episodes of the Horizon DeFi Podcast and informative content on synthetic assets.

In real-world engagement, we had the opportunity to engage with the VeChain community at the VeChain 2023 summit. Team member JR also participated in the Modular Summit in Buenos Aires. To expand awareness of our project, we have also participated in the BSCDaily L2E event, created our presence on CoinMarketCap, currently with 3.2K followers, and celebrated our second anniversary through a #HZN2years Twitter campaign, which was a big milestone! Finally, we’re excited about our new collaboration with Magic Square.

Looking Ahead to H2 2023


Our 2023 goals revolve around:

  • Increasing HZN and zAssets access points
  • Enhancing product usability and usage
  • Elevating project awareness
  • Improving protocol utility and robustness
  • Sustaining our security focus

Our focus for the latter half of this year centers on the successful auditing and deployment of updated smart contracts onto the mainnet. We’re in the final stages of auditing with PeckShield, ensuring the utmost security and reliability. A new testnet environment has been launched to showcase new features before they transition onto mainnet.

Due to substantial data migration, thorough testing of updated smart contracts is essential. After thorough testing on the testnet, we’ll be ready to deploy the new smart contracts with confidence to unlock the expected features. We’re prioritizing the release of perpetual futures with leverage trading, gradually introducing higher leverage over time to empower traders, starting with an initial maximum leverage of 10x, which can be adjusted based on user feedback.

In pursuit of security and user safety, smart contract ownership will migrate to an on-chain multisig system. This strategic move, suggested by PeckShield and the BNB Chain team, enhances liability and transparency.

Recent HIPs are being finalized in collaboration with Wombat, preparing for new pool launches on their platform. While transitioning, we maintain an option to retain the current pools in case the migration does not go as foreseen.

Community Engagement

As we approach Q3 and Q4, our community will be instrumental in the final phases of our new product launches by providing invaluable feedback and suggestions. We’ll maintain a close collaboration with our Rangers as well as the community members who participated in the UI V2 feedback roundtable. Furthermore, we’ll extend an invitation to our global community to continue sharing feedback and insights alongside the introduction of the new products.

As growth continues, we remain dedicated to decentralized development. As such, a governance roadmap and Horizon DAO framework will be explored, engaging the community in shaping the protocol’s direction. We’ll maintain Horizon Improvement Proposals (HIPs) for future upgrades, inviting input from all of the HZNation.

Protocol & Ecosystem

Our goal is to become the ultimate go-to platform for Retail Derivatives, establishing a solid reputation for Derivative-Synthetic Assets within the BNB Chain ecosystem.

The recently launched UI V2 marks a significant step towards achieving product-market fit, but we’re not stopping there. Upcoming releases, including the perpetual futures exchange and other exciting DeFi functions, will add even more value to our users’ experience and journey.

Our focus is to simplify and address user needs. We actively consider each user’s journey, aiming to expand our reach and capture attention in smart, cost-effective ways. Our testing and experimentation have shown that transparency, simplicity, and meaningful engagement are key when building awareness.

Here are some of the exciting strategies we’re currently planning:

  • Educational Awareness: We’ll continue expanding awareness through education by optimizing Horizon Academy and offering full user support for seamless onboarding. This includes updated videos, reference articles, media publications, podcasts, graphics, and short videos that help users understand and effectively utilize the new features.
  • Twitter Space Partnerships: In the coming months, we’ll forge partnerships with other projects on Twitter Spaces. These collaborations will be a major source for awareness around synthetic assets, with a goal to establish at least 10 new Twitter Space partnerships and reach a broader audience.
  • Trading Competition: As our futures go live on the mainnet, we’re investing in exciting trading competitions. These competitions will act as a magnet to attract new traders to our platform, fostering engagement and growth.
  • Influencer Campaign: We have plans to collaborate with influencers to promote the trading competition, amplifying our message and attracting more traders to participate in the events.
  • Exploring New Promotion Methods: We’re maintaining an open-minded approach to explore innovative ways to promote our protocol, always seeking for fresh and effective strategies to connect with potential users.

Regarding exchange listings, we understand our community’s frequent discussions on this topic. While we have one paid exchange listing in progress, listing on this exchange alone might not significantly impact trader or staker attraction due to current market conditions and unreleased features. Our preferred approach is to bundle the exchange listing with a product release or consider additional exchanges when the market conditions are optimal. We’re actively engaging with other exchanges for their listing offers, striving to select reputable exchanges with a cost-effective package. This ensures long-term suitability while maximizing community exposure and providing more entry points for users to join the Horizon Protocol ecosystem.

Ultimately, our goal is to bring positive change to the world of retail derivatives, making it straightforward and more enjoyable for our users. This motivates us to continually find new, creative, approaches to ensure the best possible experience for you.

Community Questions

Q: Does the implementation of the Futures feature depend on the execution of HIPs 8, 9, and 10?

No. Although the recently introduced HIPs primarily aim to enhance liquidity on the platform, they could indirectly support the futures exchange and other upcoming features. However, the implementation of these HIPs does not directly impact the futures exchange. Even if these HIPs are not implemented, the futures exchange will proceed as planned.

Q: What is the expected duration of the Horizon Protocol UI V2 testnet?
The testnet is set to run indefinitely. Each time a new feature is introduced, it will undergo testing on the testnet before being launched on the mainnet. Thus, the testnet will continue to coexist alongside the mainnet for the foreseeable future.

Q: Does every new component require a separate audit?

Yes, it does. In this case, all updates to the contracts have been combined into a thorough audit. This strategy will cover the upcoming features as well. The step-by-step development of the front-end will make using these contracts more accessible. Once the audits are finished and the contracts are live, the integration of new features will be seamless, contributing to improved efficiency.

Q: Will the new unified UI include a section for users to propose new HIPs for team review?

This concept aligns with our vision of a unified UI that offers easy access and visibility for everyone. We will need to assess whether it is worthwhile to invest the time in building the necessary architecture, as it may impact the timeline for other features. Nevertheless, we will consider this idea as part of our proposed feature list.

Closing Notes

We hope you found this community call informative and helpful. Since this is our first call, we’re still figuring out what works best for future sessions. Your feedback matters — let us know if you’d like more of these calls in the future and how we can make them even better. You can connect with us through our social media links provided below this article. We truly value your insights.

Horizon Protocol is a DeFi platform that facilitates the on-chain trading of synthetic assets that represent the real economy. Horizon Protocol seeks to provide exposure to real-world assets risk/return profiles via smart contracts on the blockchain.